March 4, 2009
For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Mitch
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Senior guard has overcome Hodgkin's lymphoma to play

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) Kelvin Davis, a senior at San Diego Sate University, has been selected as the 2009 recipient of the U.S. Basketball Writers Association's Most Courageous Award.

Davis will be honored at the USBWA's Awards Breakfast Monday, April 6 at the Renaissance Marriott in downtown Detroit. In addition, he will be the recipient of a $1,000 check, which he will donate to the charity or scholarship fund of his choice.


"I'm humbled to have been selected for this honor," said Davis, who has appeared in eight games this season for the Aztecs and has averaged 2.5 points and 1.8 rebounds in 10.4 minutes. "I want to thank the USBWA for recognizing me and the Aztec basketball program."

San Diego State head coach Steve Fisher said, "He is a great example of what a person should be. He's been through a rough stretch but there was never a whimper out of Kelvin. He's out there every day, working hard. He's an inspiration to all of us."

A 6-3 shooting guard from Waterbury, Conn., Davis was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma last spring. However, he was able to overcome the cancer and returned to the Aztecs while still undergoing his chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Davis' saga began last spring when he felt fatigued while playing. Originally, it was thought he may be coming down with mononucleosis. However, there was a lump developing on Davis' neck. He knew about it but he didn't say anything because he didn't want to jeopardize his spot on the team.

But his condition grew worse and a trip to the doctor revealed Davis had cancer. He underwent a series of 12 chemotherapy treatments over a five-month span. He was still undergoing his treatment when fall practice began and it wasn't unusual to see Davis arrive straight from the doctor to the practice gym and spend the last 20 minutes in drills.

"I never felt sorry for myself because I'd see people who were a whole lot worse than me," Davis said. "Plus, the doctors said I had a good chance to beat it."

Davis originally started his college career at Texas-El Paso, then transferred to College of Southern Idaho before moving on to San Diego State in 2007. He appeared in 18 games during the 2007-08 season, averaging 5.0 points and 2.7 rebounds.

He was expected to see more minutes as a senior before he took ill late last spring. He is contemplating petitioning the NCAA for a sixth year of eligibility.

The Most Courageous Award was established in 1978 and has been given annually to a player, coach, official or administrator who has demonstrated extraordinary courage reflecting honor in the sport of amateur basketball.

Among the more notable recipients over the years have been Jacksonville coach Bob Wenzel, Arizona guard Steve Kerr, Indiana forward Landon Turner, referee Pete Pavia, North Carolina State coach Jim Valvano, Arkansas coach Nolan Richardson, the 2001 Oklahoma State basketball team and the 2007 Duquesne basketball team.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. Today, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. For more information on the USBWA and its awards, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-421-0339.

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USBWA Most Courageous Award